As comic books are primarily a visual medium, a character’s look is always the most important thing about them. Each hero and villain had to be unique and be able to catch the eye if the creators wanted them to catch on. When these characters make the transition to the movie screen, the look has to go with them, as it has become iconic. Yet, now it isn’t simply an artist’s drawing, but an actual person who has to create that look. Harley Quinn is no different in Suicide Squad. She is colorful and flashy and has an attitude to match. While Margot Robbie understands the need to represent Harley Quinn properly, it doesn’t mean she loves the clothes. They make her more than a little self conscious.
Margot Robbie is the subject of a profile in the New York Times which covers her rise to fame through The Wolf of Wall Street as well as her upcoming takeover of the summer, where she’ll be featured in both The Legend of Tarzan and Suicide Squad. As part of the feature Robbie talks about what it’s like putting on things like tight shirts and very short shorts, saying:
As Margot, no, I don’t like wearing that. I’m eating burgers at lunchtime, and then you go do a scene where you’re hosed down and soaking wet in a white T-shirt, it’s so clingy and you’re self-conscious about it.
Apparently Robbie actually talked to director David Ayer about the clothes, but he informed her that denim overalls did not match with Harley’s iconography. Harley Quinn was actually a creation of the 90’s Batman: The Animated Series but the character was so popular that she eventually made her way into the comics. In the animated series, she was usually seen in a traditional harlequin costume, but the character has evolved over time to wear more normal, if noticeable, clothing. While having to run around in skimpy clothing would make most people feel exposed, Margot Robbie seems to have a clear understanding of the importance of having the look match the character. Otherwise, Harley just isn’t Harley.
How do you think Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn is turning out? While we’ll have to wait for August to really get an idea, she’s certainly succeeded in looking the part and that is part of the deal.